Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Why Did I Eat That?

Crunchy Oatmeal Cookies
with raisins, dates, and walnuts
Why did I eat all those cookies?
How did I eat all those cookies?

We scooted out of work before 4pm today- quite an accomplishment- because we had to be back at 6:30pm for Back to School Night. I changed into some comfy clothes to relax in until needing to go back to work (when I would put my work clothes back on), sat down on the couch with a school project, and started working.

Oh, but before I got to work I grabbed a cookie from the bowl on the counter. Just one, I thought to myself. I started working on labeling the kids names in my recording binder and munched my cookie. I decided to grab two more cookies as I continued to work. Then two more...then two more... pretty soon there were only four left in the bowl.

Ack! I immediately felt shame and embarrassment- what if my roommate sees that almost all of the cookies are gone? What will she think of me? I better hide the evidence. I tried to convince myself that I was saving myself from eating any more cookies as I put them into the freezer. And I WAS saving myself- I was minimizing harm. I ate a lot of cookies, but not ALL of the cookies. But mostly I was trying to hide the evidence from my roommate that I ate a lot of cookies. I was ashamed of myself.

At Back to School Night I started to get a stomach ache. I jokingly told a couple coworkers about all the cookies I ate, saying I must be stressed, trying to laugh off my shame and hoping they wouldn't judge me and think I was a pig. Or fat. Or other terrible things.

I was shocked when one of my coworkers said, "Oh, I know. I can sit down and go through Oreo's without even thinking when I'm stressed." If I were a cartoon my eyes would have bugged out of my head. Here I had judged her thinking she was "normal" and that she would judge me as being a horrible person for eating all those cookies, and I found out she stress eats, too. And then another person chimed in, too. Maybe I'm not such a "bad" person after all. Maybe there's a lot of people who do this. Maybe I don't have to be ashamed. Maybe I'll be ok.

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